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Dr Emily Michelson

Dr Emily Michelson

Senior Lecturer

Researcher profile

+44 (0)1334 462881
Room 7
Mediaeval History, 65 South Street
Office hours
Friday 12am to 1pm (MO1007), Thursday 11am to 12pm (MO3044), by appointment (MO4903)



I enjoy teaching on all of my research topics topics as well as on the intellectual, social and artistic traditions of Renaissance Italy.  I welcome inquiries from students interested all aspects in the Renaissance, the Reformation in Catholic regions, or the social and cultural history of Italy. I currently teach on the first-year survey MO1007, and offer honours courses on Renaissance Venice, Early Modern Rome, Renaissance Italy, and a special subject: Blood, Glory, Judgment: Early Modern Catholicism.

Research areas

I am a cultural and religious historian of early modern Italy. Most of my research coalesces around two fundamental questions: 

  1. How did early modern people balance their private beliefs with public actions? 
  2. How did close contact affect the way different religious groups interacted and imagined each other? 

 These questions have inspired all of my research, in various ways. My first book (The Pulpit and the Press in Reformation ItalyHarvard UP 2013), applied these questions to Catholic preachers in Italy as they reacted to the pressures of the Protestant Reformation. My current project (funded by a British Academy mid-career grant and an AHRC early-career fellowship), Imaginary Jews in Early Modern Rome, uncovers the history forced public sermons to Jews and sees them as an important tool of Catholic reform.  I have also co-edited one volume of essays in honor of Prof. Carlos Eire, and a second, more recently, on the varieties of religious minorities in early modern Rome. I am increasingly interested in how the act of walking changes the way we think, and particularly in interfaith encounters that took place outdoors and on foot in the early modern world.


Selected publications


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